As a geek blogger and frequent gadget early adopter, all sorts of folks have been asking me what’s coming from Apple today and how much I’m willing to spend. Like most outside Cupertino, I only have rumors to go by. Which we typically abstain from covering. Yet the last time we were engulfed by this sort of singularly focused crescendo, the iPhone was accurately predicted. Maybe not the precise details, but product type. So given the compelling “evidence,” as reported by the Wall Street Journal and McGraw Hill’s CEO, a computing tablet announcement today seems likely. But what I’m willing to pay is highly dependent on functionality, perceived value, and unfortunately… lust. A $600 color Kindle, as designed by Apple, probably wouldn’t move me. Yet a $1200 slate that does everything, including things I’ve yet to imagine, and does them well housed in a compelling package could very well separate me from my cash. Fortunately, and finally, all will be revealed in about five hours.
While it’s probably too late for Mr. Jobs to receive my requests, there are two things in particular I’d like to see from them (or someone else) in a tablet form factor. First, I’ve always loved magazines. Yet, I no longer love paper. I’m not too fond of Zinio either. So I’d really enjoy a well-done digital magazine storefront and reader, controlled via touch. Yes, I’m willing to pay. And perhaps a monthly ZNF digest would look nice reformatted for couch-based browsing.
The other thing I’d appreciate is some sort of stand or easel along with the ability to use a wireless (Bluetooth, or other) keyboard. Same as a frequent iPhone request of mine. Because, despite how clever the Apple tablet may be, I probably don’t need both a 10″ slate and 13″ Macbook. Even if the OS is locked down (think iPhone, non-multitasking apps), a keyboard will allow me to GTD – at home and on the road.